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Why Did the GOP Healthcare Plan Fail

Sun, Jul. 23, 2017 Posted: 09:11 AM


The new “GOP Healthcare Plan” seemed to be gaining traction and over the last few weeks it looked like it could be given life, effectively paving way for the annihilation of Obamacare, something that Republicans have used as a symbol for their hatred over the last couple terms. But it didn’t work out, the bill collapsed and now it’s on its knees.

So what happened? Well, while the Democrats will be blamed for the failure of the bill and their staunch unwillingness to agree to anything that opposed their previous leader’s healthcare plan, this one is on the Republicans. In fact, it all boils down to Trump’s first few months in office.

Why it Failed

Trump’s presidency has not been a game changer, nor has it been a game ender. For the most part, it’s been a case of same-old same-old. We’ve had foreign conflicts, domestic drama. It is rather unusual to have so much drama so early on in a presidency, but US leaders are never too far away from domestic issues and foreign complaints.

One of the things that has defined this presidency though is the approval rating. Because whether you’re on Trump’s side or not, you can’t argue with the fact that he has the lowest approval rating of any US president. He has his diehard supporters (focusing on his success in business, the way he can help the US stock markets and oppose China), but for every 1 of those there are 2 detractors, and that’s why this bill collapsed.

The Democrats in the senate were always going to oppose him, there was no surprise there. But he also has more detractors in his own party than any other president. And because of that approval rating and a feeling that they are not alone, Republican senators who disagree with Trump have felt confident enough in coming forward and making their voices heard.

If that approval rating was higher and they knew that they would be going against their president and their people, it just wouldn’t happen. The bill would have been passed, the drama would have been minimal and we’d all be preparing for a true healthcare reform. But that hasn’t been the case.

Healthcare law remains unchanged and will likely do so for the foreseeable future. There will be more efforts to push reform through and to make these big changes to the US health sector. But you only need to look at the figures to see how difficult it’s going to be. Only a third of all Americans like him, while three quarters of them define him as “unpresidential”. Regardless of where you stand or what you believe, those are some poor figures and unless they change then big bills like this will be impossible to pass.

Dylan Moran